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Kings Canyon National Park

 

One of our favorite spots in the world is Kings Canyon National Park in California. The beauty has held it's spell on us for what feels like forever. Don and I spent part of our honeymoon in Kings. We were lucky and landed jobs at Boyden Cavern in the canyon on our honeymoon. The first seven months of our marriage we worked there as cave naturalists. Living in the forest, we really got to know the area. We have gone back almost every year to visit the canyon. Our kids Dani and Josh have grown up seeing the many sights the park has to offer. It's like a second home to us.

The Zumwalt Meadows trail located towards the Roads End in Kings Canyon offers some of the most glorious views. The beauty is immediately enjoyable, from the parking lot overlooking the Kings River surrounded by marble and granite cliffs. Get out of your car and head along the right side of the river. Play close attention to the right side and you will see some grave sites. Head over to the bridge to begin this easy one and a half mile trail that follows the river to the edge of the cliffs to the meadow and back to the forest.

We, the DeLucia's have seen Zumwalt Meadows in many forms of weather. One of the most captivating was our last trip there right before the roads closed for the season in late November to late April. Having lived in Southern California all our lives we wanted to experience the essence of Fall and the legendary colors of the leaves. Our family knew what to expect, but we were all still blown away by the beauty. The vibrancy was amazing, equivalent to nature's own fireworks display in textures, colors and patterns. And we pretty much had the entire place to ourselves.

We continued our trip to Knapp's Cabin and took the obligatory photo opp with the kids. Don and I figure if we put those years of photos together, we'd have a photo montage of the kids growing up. Something to think about, insert mental note here.

Of course we had to visit the caves along the way. And we saw the wildlife we have grown accustomed to seeing. But what we didn't plan on, and it has come into play before, was a flat tire we got on the steep canyon road. Fixing the problem at hand, we all had to admit that it was a positive to work in such spectacular scenery. Flat tires and being cavers just seem to go together we have learned.

Our next stop proved to be even bigger. We planned to end our trip venturing into major tree territory, to see the giant Sequoia trees. These majestic wonders resemble melted candles and can give one a stiff neck peering up too long to awe at their magnitude. The Sequoia trees can measure up to 300 feet in height and are the largest living trees on earth. The reddish brown bark can measure up to four feet deep and is fire repellent. The age of the Giant Sequoia trees are believed to be more than 2,000 years old.

We invite you to join us on our hike of Zumwalt Meadows, waterfalls, poking our heads into small caves, visiting the biggest trees in the world, and the most impressive colored leaves we've seen. It's just another one of our adventures where we like to go "OutDoors And not…" Guaranteed you'll have a good time, any and every time.

Let's Go!

Lisa's book on our early adventures and her tact to balance work life and cave exploration